All sessions are held in the Church and begin at 7:30 p.m. Ideas for sessions are always welcome; please contact one of the coordinators.
November 4th, 7.30-8.30 p.m. : US Election Debrief and Manifestation Circle
This Inspired Explorations program will be held one day after the US election and just two weeks since the provincial election. Come decompress, learn from each other and manifest a brighter future together in a sharing circle. Facilitated by Frances Litman.
November 11th, 7.30 p.m. A Quantum Hypnosis Experience.
Jennifer Sagar writes: “In this session I will offer an introduction to Quantum Hypnosis Healing Technique (QHHT) with a short experiential session. I’ll talk about its benefits and how it has helped many people on their healing journey.” Jennifer’s sessions are known for the live, soothing musical accompaniment on ethnic instruments that help facilitate a powerful healing meditation exploration. The event will conclude with a sharing circle.
This session will also be offered on ZOOM. For the link, email Chris Bullock at email@example.com, or contact one of the session coordinators: Pat Miller, Linda Chan & Catherine Kinsella
November 18th, 7.30 p.m. A Chilcotin Photo Journal.
Christine Anderson writes “I am a lifelong wilderness lover who for many years has relished annual solo backpacking and kayaking trips. At 73, I can no longer carry heavy loads but am finding creative means of “getting out there” on my own. This year my son offered me a return flight anywhere in alpine Canada. My choice is the subject of this presentation. It describes in journal excerpts, commentary and photos my personal experience, the wilderness beauty and wildlife, and brief historical references of the area and of two truly wild and brave Chilcotin women. The highlights were the ten days I spent entirely alone in a fly-in-only solo cabin on Wilderness Lake near Tweedsmuir Park, followed by what proved to be a successful quest to see grizzly bears.
This session will be presented on Zoom. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for the link. Coordinated by Nancy Miller-Stone (Zoom host) and Chris Bullock.
November 25th, 7.30pm: Reflecting on Winter/ December.
With the beginning of December, we are decisively into the season of winter. Not only does the month of December contain many different celebrations (Winter Solstice, Christmas, Bodhi Day etc.), it also contains many experiences (joy, loneliness, community, skating, skiing, caroling, working for the postal service etc.) As usual, you are invited to bring poems or songs—your own or someone else’s—on any theme, but if this time of year speaks to you, then bring poems or songs on the season to the circle. The circle will be exclusively on Zoom; please write to email@example.com for the link.
Facilitators: Chris Bullock, Hendrik de Pagter, Nancy Miller-Stone (Zoom host), Terence Stone.
December 2nd , 7.30 p.m. Poems From The Pandemic
The COT Poetry and Song Circle has agreed to co-sponsor a special event as the last session of Inspirational Explorations offerings for 2020: a reading by the BC contributors to the anthology We are One – Poems from the Pandemic, ed. George Melnyk (Calgary: Bayeux Arts, 2020). The readers from Vancouver Island include Chris Bullock, COT/CCL Board President, who is very enthusiastic about the anthology and its contribution to understanding the experience of the pandemic, and to helping out —-all profits from the book will be donated to groups working to support vulnerable populations affected by the pandemic. This event will be exclusively on Zoom; to receive the link and/or get further information about the book, contact Chris Bullock at firstname.lastname@example.org
THIS IS THE LAST INSPIRATIONAL EXPLORATIONS SESSION FOR 2020: THE PROGRAM WILL RESUME )N JANUARY 11, 2021.
SEASON‘S GREETINGS AND HAPPY NEW YEAR TO EVERYONE FROM THE COT IE TEAM!!!
Vinod will guide approximately twenty minutes of Meditation with his flute, twenty minutes of Call and Response Chanting, and twenty minutes of Questions and Answers or Story telling from the Hindu scriptures.
About the Music: In the eastern traditions, music is considered divine. It is sometimes called Naad Brahm, naad meaning sound, and Brahm meaning the Divine Creator. The use of music in or during meditation is also a practice in Hinduism, Buddhism, and Sufism. In the Sikh religion, all prayer is musical. Apart from meditation, chanting is also a large part of the exercise or effort to connect with the Divine. Chanting can be the repetition of a name (of your favourite deity), or of a mantra. It is usually done as a call and response.
About Vinod Bhardwaj: Vinod is a retired engineer/planner, with an interest in music and mythology. He grew up in Varanasi, India, and migrated to Canada in 1975. After spending a very large part of his life in Edmonton, he and Robina came to Victoria in 2008. Vinod is a regular participant at the Hindu temple in Saanichton, as well as at the Sikh temple on Topaz Street. He is a member of the Church of Truth, and has held many Bhakti Nights, (chanting/story telling) in the Church.
This Evening will also be on Zoom!
Click here or use the login information below
Zoom ID #: 765-216-352
You can also join by calling the following number
778 907 2071
and then entering the Zoom ID # and Password above.*** Special note to ZOOMERS: in order to respect both Vinod and the peacefulness of the Meditation, participants will be admitted via Zoom only up till 7:30 sharp! At that time, microphones will be muted until the participatory part of the evening so don’t miss out on the Meditation with Vinod’s flute.
Coordinators: Pat Miller, Linda Chan, Denver Carere and Catherine Kinsella
October 14th, 7.30 pm: Wednesday Night Art Explorations
Get ready for Halloween Paint Night!
We will be painting “Nightmare before Christmas” in Van Gogh style. I (Michelle) will demonstrate the how to’s from start to finish. I will supply the canvas 18×24. Please bring: cup for water, tarp or cover to protect work space, your own paints and brushes! A fine tip, and medium brush is recommended.
Facilitator : Michelle Ginting. Zoom will be an option.
October 21st, 7:30 pm: Eating for a Safe Relationship with the Planet and All Its Creatures
Long-time Church of Truth member, Marvelous Trudeau, will share her transformational story about her relationship with food as medicine, health, wealth and connected consciousness in this interactive program facilitated (and coordinated) by Frances Litman.
October 28th, 7.30pm: The Dead Come Closer: Poetry and Song Circle.
Our circle takes place close to the date of the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain, which marked a time when the membrane separating the world of the living and the dead was at its thinnest. This festival is probably the origin of the celebrations of the Day of the Dead, notably in Mexico, and All Hallows Eve (the origin of the term Halloween) and All Saints Day in the Christian tradition. As usual, you are invited to bring poems or songs—your own or someone else’s—on any theme, but if this time of year speaks to you, then bring poems or songs on this theme to the circle. The circle will be exclusively on Zoom; please write to email@example.com for the link.
Facilitators: Chris Bullock, Hendrik de Pagter, Nancy Miller-Stone (Zoom host), Terence Stone).
We have the opportunity this Wednesday evening , September 9, to have our first Inspirational Explorations session both at the church, live, and also by zoom, using the link that appears in the newsletter for our weekly Sunday service. The chanting, in David Muncaster’s sonorous voice, offers listeners an opportunity to calm and focus the mind for meditation to the beautiful sounds of the sacred Sanskrit.
Click here or use the login information below
Zoom ID #: 765-216-352
You can also join by calling the following number
778 907 2071
and then entering the Zoom ID # and Password above
Here is David’s write up:
In India, in the Hindu tradition, chanting the 1000 names of various gods and goddesses is a popular practice. These names are in Sanskrit, and come from scriptures that are over 2300 years old.
I was first introduced to the 1000 Names of the Goddess in 2002, when I met Amma, my main spiritual teacher. Chanting these Names has been my daily spiritual practice for the last 15 years.
Chanting the 1000 Names of the Goddess is said to bring wealth, peace, the removal of the effects of past mistakes, and the strength to understand Truth.
Each name of the Goddess describes a specific quality of the Goddess, for example:
#6 – She who has the radiance of 1000 rising suns. #326 – She who is the ocean of compassion. #730 – She who is pure love. #746 – She who is the full moon to the ocean of good fortune. #832 – She who is the giver of life.
Please join me, Wednesday September 9th, to listen to a full chanting of the 1000 Names of the Goddess. I will translate many of the names into English, as I chant. ??
– David Muncaster
Facilitator: Michelle Ginting. Coordinator: Louisa Fiander
The evening entails a walk-through on how to draw mandalas. Please bring your own art supplies. A ruler, pencils and ink pens are recommended.
Inspirational Explorations (IE) Wednesdays in 2020 will run till the end of May. All sessions are held in the Church and begin at the NEW TIME of 7.30 p.m. Ideas for sessions are always welcome; please contact one of the coordinators mentioned below.
MARCH 2020 PROGRAM: DISCRIMINATION AND CHANGE
March, as the month when Spring officially arrives, is often seen as the month of change, and promise. Since it is associated with the astrological sign of Pisces, it can be seen as the month where many waters begin to flow, many paths begin to open up. But Pisces is usually represented by two fish swimming in the opposite direction, and often the paths we envisage are actually leading us in contradictory ways. So we need to be able to discriminate between the paths that will lead us to the “same old” and the paths that will lead us to real change, both individually and collectively. —Chris Bullock
March 4: Changing Land Use Laws in the CRD. Presented by Eric Diller
Eric Diller, president of IslandTransformations.org, will discuss local government land use laws and how these laws contribute to our income inequality, high debt levels and our high emissions. He will offer solutions to these issues that provide citizens with more housing and transportation choices. (Coordinated by Frances Litman).
March 11: Heal the Heart, Heal the Earth. Presenter: Kim Sibbitt
Presentation/Workshop. Kim uses a circle anagram which becomes a medicine circle and opens an opportunity for deep healing. Kim says “The Healing Circle teaches us that there are no weakest links. All living things mirror a part of something greater than ourselves that resides within.” The message of the circle is Heal The Heart, Heal The Earth and Heal The Earth, Heal The Heart; because we are one, what we do for one we do for the whole.
Biography: Kim is a multi media artist who is living her dream on her boat/studio on the ocean at Fisherman’s Wharf in Victoria. She was born with crayons in her pockets and feels that creativity is the thread that connected the dots throughout her life. Kim believes that art, in any form, heals and it is critical to our and the planet’s well being. View her video: https://youtu.be/w-uZm_AMsN0 (Coordinated by Peggy Muncaster)
March 18: Experiencing Change: Poetry and Song Circle.
Facilitators: Chris Bullock and Hendrik de Pagter). A circle where presenters and audience interact in an intimate and safe setting. Bring a poem, reading or song—either your own or someone else’s—or simply come to listen. The theme is offered as an invitation, not an essential requirement. (Coordinated by Chris Bullock)
March 25: Surrender: Your Ticket to Freedom—Presentation/ Workshop led by Jayka Duncan.
Presentation: Jayka will share how she finally realized that her limiting beliefs and the attached emotions had festered over decades and caused cancer in her body. In October, 2018 she started a daily surrender practice (that she still practice to this day) of allowing herself to feel all the stuffed down emotions without resistance and bringing them up to the light. In less than 4 months she went from stage 4 cancer to being cancer free and so much more. She will discuss how a surrender practice is the ticket to freedom. Surrendering does not just heal physical disease, it also has the power to bring more ease with relationships, with money, at work and with body image.
Workshop: Jayka will provide a practical explanation of her surrender meditation, and then will guide the group in a meditation.
Homework (optional): If you are interested, Jayka recommends that , before attending the workshop, you become very aware of your reactions throughout the day. Notice patterns of your behaviour, emotions, words (both to self and others) and thoughts. Ask yourself: is there is anything that you would like to let go of, such as anger, jealousy, fear, shame, guilt? Pick one to be with during this surrender meditation.
Jayka Duncan was diagnosed with recurring breast cancer in 2016. Choosing to follow her intuition, she knew that Western medicine was not the answer. She spent 18 months trying many different kinds of holistic methods, but nothing worked. In October, 2018, she was told that the cancer had metastasized, making it stage 4. This was the moment that she surrendered, and her healing journey truly started. Four months later, in February, 2019, she was told that there was no active cancer in her body. Surrendering healed her body.
Jayka is the author of the published book Healed by Cancer and will bring copies for anyone who may be interested in purchasing one. She is a surrender coach: innerhealthouterwealthcoaching.com She also co-hosts a podcast: twopalsinapod.com
(Coordinated by Pat Miller)
FEBRUARY 2020 PROGRAM: FRUITFUL CONNECTION
Inspirational Explorations (IE) Wednesdays in 2020 will begin on February 8, and run till the end of May. All sessions are held in the Church and begin at the NEW TIME of 7.30 p.m. Ideas for sessions are always welcome; please contact one of the coordinators mentioned below.
Most of February is governed by the sign of Aquarius, the Water Bearer. In archetypal psychology, water is most often linked to the dimensions of feeling, flow and change. We cannot grow fruit in February, at least in the Northern hemisphere. But we can grow the fruit of connection, or warm relationship. It is not for nothing that the event most celebrated in February is Valentine’s Day. Though Valentine’s Day has become identified with the sphere of romantic love, we might see this day, and this month, in the wider context of fruitful connection, the cultivation not of the soil but of our connection with the spark of spirit in others and ourselves, and in the earth on which we depend for our lives.
February 5: Regenerative Agriculture. Presented by Gary MacDougall.
Learn about how one family turned their front yard into a food garden and started a neighbourhood movement. Gary MacDougall was recently featured in Victoria News. He will share tips for how to become food secure. (Coordinator: Frances Litman)
February 12: The Many Varieties of Love: Poetry and Song Circle. (Facilitators: Chris Bullock and Hendrik de Pagter).
Just before Valentine’s Day, it seems appropriate to reflect on the wider variety of meanings and applications covered by this four-letter word. In the circle, presenters and audience interact in an intimate and safe setting. Bring a poem or song—either your own or someone else’s—or simply come to listen. The theme is offered as an invitation, not an essential requirement. (Coordinator: Chris Bullock)
February 19: February 19 – Exploring Lyme Disease (Facilitators: Catherine Kinsella and Kirsty Inglis)
Lyme disease is finally becoming more recognized and identified in the medical system, the popular press and social media. Catherine and Kirsty have both had Lyme disease and now work to help others who are suffering from this bewildering, debilitating condition. They will each briefly share their stories and the tremendous difficulties, learning and hidden gifts encountered throughout years of healing. Interactive discussion will follow and a group healing blessing will be sent out to all those who are struggling with Lyme disease.
Catherine is an RN who contracted Lyme disease in 2013. Although it took only 8 weeks from the time she first developed symptoms to when she received a diagnosis, she went from being very healthy to being bedridden. Her journey back to health was long and complex, and made much more challenging by a lack of knowledge and awareness about Lyme disease within the healthcare system. After regaining her strength, Catherine started to advocate for changes to the healthcare system to increase awareness and improve care for those with Lyme disease.
After an early career working as an economist, Kirsty became severely disabled as a result of late stage Lyme disease. Her descent into disability left her non-functional as a human being. After finding that Western medicine was unable to help, she slowly – and somewhat reluctantly – opened up to a broader understanding of what medicine truly is. She started replacing pharmaceuticals with plant-based medicines and later she learned to act upon the internal messaging she was receiving about what her body needed to heal itself. Supported by a wonderful team of medical and alternative practitioners she underwent a miraculous transformation. From being bedbound and severely cognitively impaired, Kirsty became 100% well and medication-free within two years. In this time Kirsty learned not only how to heal herself but also how to guide others through their own healing. Since her remarkable recovery, Kirsty’s knowledge has been strengthened by working with traditional healers in Latin and North America and through quiet contemplation and connection to nature.
(Coordinator: Pat Miller)
February 26: Hindu Mythology and Sacred Chanting (Facilitator: Vinod Bhardwaj)
Vinod Bhardwaj will present and lead a combination of sacred chants and stories. Vinod is a multifaceted personality, an engineer and planner by profession, but an ardent musician by nature. Before moving to Victoria ten years ago, he lived in Edmonton, where he was inducted into the Arts and Culture Hall of Fame. Vinod is a story teller as well, and loves to regale his audience with little stories from Hindu mythology, which have timeless messages. (Coordinator: Peggy Muncaster)
Inspirational Explorations (IE) Wednesdays in 2020 will begin on January 8, and run till the end of May. All sessions are held in the Church and begin at the NEW TIME of 7.30 p.m. Ideas for sessions are always welcome; please contact one of the coordinators mentioned below.
JANUARY 2020 PROGRAM: AWAKENING TO THE DEPTH OF LIFE
January is often regarded as the month of making (and often failing to keep) New Year Resolutions. But how will we know what resolutions to make if we are out of touch with the deepest parts of ourselves and our world? In the flurry of activity that most often accompanies the Christmas season, the connection with our core that the slower-paced winter season offers us is often lost. But January is still winter, and offers us the chance to connect with the deepest places in us—perhaps through dreamwork and contemplation, or through spiritual practices like chanting and meditation, or through the exploration of our creativity. Awakened by this connection, we can bring forth a genuine newness into the New Year.
January 8: Dream Circle Workshop evening.(Facilitator: Pearl Gregor)
Pearl Gregor will begin the workshop with a brief overview of her intentions and experience, telling her story of dreams, journals and meditations in about 15 minutes.
She will then move to “Discovering the Deep Power of Dreams,” a deep and dynamic group process that brings together the experiences, wisdom and knowledge of the Circle participants. Come honor the dream and the dreamers. Come to ask questions like: what questions does the dream ask the dreamer? Come to learn about dream work, work with your own dreams and contribute to the circle of dreamers.
You are asked to bring your journal, pen and perhaps crayons or color pencils to use in working with your dreams.
For details of Pearl’s biography, life, work and much more, click on https://www.dreamsalongtheway.com (Coordinator: Peggy Muncaster)
January 15: Hindu Mythology and Sacred Chanting (Facilitator: Vinod Bhardwaj)
** CANCELLATION of Wed., Jan 15 Inspirational Explorations Session on Hindu Mythology and Sacred Chanting with Vinod Bhardwaj.
Inclement weather has caused this session to be rescheduled in February.
Vinod Bhardwaj will present and lead a combination of sacred chants, musical meditation, and stories. Vinod is a multifaceted personality, an engineer and planner by profession, but an ardent musician by nature. Before moving to Victoria ten years ago, he lived in Edmonton, where he was inducted into the Arts and Culture Hall of Fame. Vinod is a story teller as well, and loves to regale his audience with little stories from Hindu mythology, which have timeless messages. (Coordinator: Pat Miller)
January 22: Awakening to Depth: Poetry and Song Circle. (Facilitators: Chris Bullock and Hendrik de Pagter).
A circle where presenters and audience interact in an intimate and safe setting. Bring a poem or song—either your own or someone else’s—or simply come to listen. The theme is offered as an invitation, not an essential requirement. (Coordinator: Chris Bullock)
January 29: Creative Awakening
This event will combine a talent show with an art and book exhibition, all set up between 7.10 and 7.30. Bring something to perform, or anything you would like to display (and sell, if you like), or do both. Or come as audience. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org to sign up for performing or exhibiting or both. Come and let’s make this a powerful awakening!!